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According to an online report, “KidsHealth”, more than 200,000 children are treated in hospitals annually due to playground-related injuries. A startling figure it seems, but playground injuries can be prevented with the right safety measures put in place. Victory Bernard writes

No doubt, playgrounds offer children a place for recreation, fun and exercise. Many schools have periods set aside for fun for their pupils.

Play time is a major part of children’s psychological growth plan in very many schools. Hence, it would be indiscreet to take this away from our kids.

It is therefore paramount for care to be taken when exposing children to playgrounds especially in schools. In most school today, there are playground facilities like Swings, Seesaw, Slides, among others; which children use as for fun. In such atmosphere for play, school management, teachers and parents have a role to play in ensuring that children do not get injured in the course of playing on the play grounds.

In the view of award-winning child safety expert, Ugochi Obidiegwu, who doubles as the Managing Partner of Ulomka Multi Solutions, she said that care must be taken to avoid regrettable injuries on children during play.

According to her, “Schools need to make the playground safe by removing sharp corners, cushioning floors using sand, grass or fake turf. These little adjustments would reduce the gravity of injury associated with falls or bumping into corners.”

She further added that there is need to build safety responsibility in the kids while playing with one another smoothly.

“The second part to this is that we have to teach children not to play roughly with one another. When we teach them the implications, it gives
them a sense of responsibility. So while we fix infrastructure, we also need to train them for behaviour modification. This is how we begin to build safety consciousness in them.”

“I think that most schools do not see how dangerous it can be. For them, it’s just play and you may hear things like, ‘is it not just falling down’. Falling down should not be made to seem trivial because a variety of factors can make common fall lead to death,” she hinted.

Obidiegwu implored all those involved in the care of children to be on guard for the safety of children on the playground.

“If teachers, educators and school owners are made to see the gravity of negligence on playgrounds, I believe it will help them make better
decisions,” she concluded.

Playgrounds provide a recreational refuge for children and play a role in the development of their cognitive, psychosocial and physical coordination skills. Unfortunately, it can also be a source of injury. Hence, parents, school management, teachers and guardians must be on guard to see to their safety while playing.

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